Tisha Critical Context - Essay

Anne S. Purdy

Critical Context

Specht’s composition of Tisha came many years after his first meeting with the heroine of this book, as it was not until he became a free-lance writer that he put her story down on paper. This lapse in time might account for some of the liberties taken in the work. Hobbs, who went on to marry Fred Purdy, was more than seventy-five years old when Tisha was published in 1976. Thus, although she had lived the story herself, those events recorded in the book had occurred a half-century beforehand and may have become altered somewhat by her memory.

This simple, true tale of one young woman’s adventure in the unknown has been molded by a creative writer who depicts a historical time and a severe place as an experience to remember. This book will be remembered not as a history text but as an exciting account of the life of one courageous individual. Although Specht suggests in Tisha that a sequel was possible, none was written before Hobbs’s death in 1987.